Voiceover Top Ten “Outside the Box” Tips

Sounding conversational in a voiceover script is all the rage, and i’ll give you those top ten voiceover tips in a sec.   The natural style of “announcing” has been popular for a while now. This is either a smart and sensible idea or simply the backlash to all bad trends, the “announcery” and “phony” style in this case being the bad “trend.” It amazes me all the time, and my students as well, that sounding like you do every day when you’re talking to a family member, a coworker, a friend….is the hardest thing to do in a script? Why is it easier to “announce” than it is to simply “talk?” I believe the answer lies in a combination of both our training (hearing those old-school announcers for so long as children) and the fact that when faced with words that are not our own, and that have an agenda of sorts, we sense the falsity of it and become false ourselves. But, these are excuses. This doesn’t mean it is not challenging to overcome, but it is possible. It’s called acting.

I don’t believe acting is something you can throw in to a voiceover lesson as a sort of side dish. I tell all my students that yes this is called voice acting for a reason and encourage all of them to get acting training separately from voice over training. Voice over is a combination of solid acting, strong control of the voice (pacing, inflection, register etc.), and script analysis. The art of voice-over is not black and white, and that is already redundant after using the word “art.” As such, there are conventional and non-conventional ways of approaching the script with success. Do you lean more towards your right brain or your left brain? I elaborate on this concept in Your Voiceover Brain…..In either case, this list of alternative ways to get into more of that loose, less-formal place with your delivery may help. Consider it the domino effect – by engaging yourself in activities which are fun, relaxing, silly, real, etc…..you are able to transfer those FEELINGS to the script you are reading:

  • Wear sweatpants
  • Read while sitting comfortably on the couch
  • Read back and forth with your best friend
  • Have a glass of wine
  • Read it over the phone to a friend or family member
  • Add words to the script
  • Listen to a joke before you read
  • Watch one of those cute animal videos on YouTube
  • Stutter slightly for some of your words/ideas
  • Picture someone you like to say this to
  • Make 5 silly faces in the mirror first
  • Dance like crazy for a few minutes first

(loosen your body, domino effect, loosen your mind, loosen your voice)

You’re welcome for the extra two 😉

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